Neil Funk and Stacey King bring you behind-the-scenes insight and commentary on WGN's Chicago Bulls "BullsEye" blog. Also check out video of player interviews, photo galleries, and unique Bulls statistics from STATS, Inc.

April 2010 Archives

Game Notes For Game 5 @ Cavs

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* Each of the Cavaliers' last five home victories against the Bulls has come by double digits.

* The last two times in which the Cavaliers led a playoff series 3-1 and hosted Game 5 (2007 vs. Nets, 2008 vs. Wizards), they lost Game 5 before closing the series out in Game 6 on the road.

* This is only the second time since 1989 that the Bulls have trailed a postseason series, 3-1.

* With a win tonight, Cavaliers Head Coach Mike Brown (39-25, .609) will join only five other NBA coaches to have earned their 40th playoff win in only 65 games or less (Phil Jackson - 55, Johnny Kundla - 55, Pat Riley - 56, Billy Cunningham - 64, Chuck Daly - 65).

* After 285 postseason games in franchise history, a Bulls player had never posted a 20-point/20-rebound performance in the playoffs. In game 286, Joakim Noah changed that when he finished with 21 points and a postseason career-best 20 rebounds.

* In Game 4, LeBron James became the only player in NBA since 1979-1980 when the three-pointer was introduced in the NBA to have at least 30 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists while making at least six three-pointers in a playoff game.

Bulls Face Win Or Hang'em Up

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Bulls Blown Out In Game 4

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Game Notes For Game #4 vs. Cavs

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* Cleveland is 2-2 all-time in Game 4's in best-of-seven series when holding a 2-1 lead after three games (4-0 series record).

* The Bulls have been down 2-1 in 10 best-of-seven series all-time, but have come back to win only one of those series (1993 Eastern Conference finals vs. Knicks).

* Throughout his career (regular season and postseason), the Bulls are now 8-2 when Derrick Rose scores 30 or more points.

* Chicago has won each of its last five home games against the Cavs when scoring 100-plus points.

* LeBron James was two assists shy of recording his fifth career postseason triple-double in Game 3. Only Jason Kidd (11) has registered more triple-doubles in the postseason among active players.

* While Cleveland averaged 44.0 points in the paint per game during the regular season (tied for seventh most in the league), the Cavs are averaging just 37.3 during the postseason, 10th most among the 16 playoff teams.

Noah and Bulls Ready For Game 4

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Game Notes For Game 3 vs. Cavs

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* The Cavaliers won Game 2 to take a 2-0 series lead. They have a 6-0 series record all-time when taking a 2-0 lead, including three sweeps.

* Cleveland's .563 field-goal percentage in Game 2 (40/71) was its highest in a playoff game since Game 7 of the 1992 Eastern Conference semifinals versus Boston (.590). The Cavs are 29-1 this season when shooting better than 50 percent from the field.

* The Bulls scored 56 points in the paint on Tuesday, compared to Cleveland's 38. They had just 26 points in the paint in Game 1.

* Joakim Noah scored a career-high 25 points in Game 2, to go along with 13 rebounds. Over his last seven games, Noah is averaging 16.6 points, 13.3 rebounds, and 2.4 blocked shots.

* Derrick Rose has scored 20 or more points in seven straight games, averaging 27.4 per game over that span.

* LeBron James had 40 points, eight rebounds, and eight assists in Game 2, his second career playoff game meeting those minimums (also last May 9 vs. Hawks). No other active player has more than one 40-8-8 game in the playoffs.


Bulls Lose Game 2 @ Cleveland

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Game Notes For Monday vs. Cavs

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stats inc.jpg* The Cavaliers have never lost a playoff series in which they won Game 1, going 9-0. Last season, Cleveland went on to sweep Detroit and Atlanta in the first two rounds after Game 1 wins. * With their 96-83 win in Game 1, the Cavs are now 22-1 this season when holding their opponent under 90 points. The lone such loss came back on Nov. 5 at home versus the Bulls (86-85). * Chicago has won just one playoff series in the post-Jordan era, a 4-0 first-round sweep of the Heat in 2007. The Bulls were eliminated in the first round in 2005, 2006, and 2009. * The Bulls made just 1-of-7 three-pointers in Game 1, their fewest attempted and made from long range in their last 25 games (1-for-6 in overtime defeat of Portland on Feb. 26). * Derrick Rose scored a game-high 28 points in Saturday's loss, to go along with 10 assists. In his only previous career Game 1 (last year vs. Celtics), Rose had 36 points and 11 assists. * LeBron James has scored at least 20 points in his last 21 postseason games, the longest active streak in the league. His 24 points in Game 1 ended a streak of 17 straight playoff games scoring 25+, however. * Anderson Varejao tied a season high with 15 rebounds Saturday. The Cavaliers are 16-3 this season when Varejao pulls down 10 or more rebounds.

Bulls Prep For Game 2

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Bulls Drop Game 1 To Cavs

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Game Notes For Wednesday @ Charlotte

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stats inc.jpg* The home team has won all six games in this series since the beginning of 2008-09. Chicago owns a 14-7 edge in the all-time series.

* The Bulls beat Boston on Tuesday to take a one-game lead over Toronto in the race for the No. 8 seed in the Eastern Conference. Chicago can clinch a playoff spot with either a win or a Raptors loss on Wednesday.

* The Bobcats' bench outscored New Jersey, 50-4, in Charlotte's 105-95 victory on Monday. The Bobcats will face second-seeded Orlando in the opening round of the playoffs.

* Derrick Rose led the Bulls with a career-high 39 points on Tuesday, going 15-for-22 from the field and 9-for-10 from the free-throw line. He's averaging 28.5 points over his last four games.

* Gerald Henderson went 6-for-9 from the field and scored 14 points on Monday, exceeding his combined point total (13) in 10 games since March 6.

* With 17 points on Monday, Stephen Jackson became just the fourth player in NBA history to total at least 1,500 points after being acquired from another team in midseason.

Bulls Win, Won't Discuss Fight Allegations

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Game Notes For Tuesday vs. Boston

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stats inc.jpg* After winning the first two meetings between these clubs this season, the Celtics dropped the last contest 96-83 on January 14. Boston has won three of its last four trips to Chicago.

* The Bulls are one win shy of reaching 40 victories for the second straight season and for the fifth time in the last six campaigns.

* The Celtics have alternated wins and losses in each of their last five games overall (WLWLW) and will be looking to win three in a row on the road for the first time since February 16-19.

* Joakim Noah had 18 points, 19 rebounds and seven assists against Toronto on Sunday and has grabbed 10 or more boards in four of his last five games.

* Paul Pierce has scored 20-plus points in two straight and four of his last six road games. However, Pierce has been held below 20 points in three of his last four trips to Chicago.

* Chicago is averaging an NBA-leading 44.5 rebounds per game this season while Boston is averaging the second-fewest (38.6).  

The Last Blog Of The Season - Stacey King

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Hello to all of my "peeps" out there reading my blog. The Bulls play The Raptors today in a battle for the 8th and final playoff spot. To say this is a must win would be an understatement. Toronto holds the tie-breaker over Chicago winning the season series. We will all just have to sit back and watch if the Bulls can recover from Friday's double-overtime loss in New Jersey.

I would like to say thanks to all of you fans and my "peeps" for reading my blog this season.

See you next season!

Thanks Again

-SK

Game Notes For Friday @ Nets

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* New Jersey has won 14 of its last 15 home games against the Bulls.
* Chicago's one-point win over Cleveland on Thursday not only pulled them into a tie with Toronto for 8th in the East, it was the first time all season the Bulls have won a game by a single point.
* The Nets have split their last eight games, averaging 99.0 points in these contests - well above their season average of 91.9 ppg.
* In his last two home games against the Bulls, Devin Harris has averaged 34.0 points and 5.5 assists, while going 21-for-25 from the free throw line.
* Joakim Noah is averaging 11.5 points, 12.5 rebounds and 2.0 blocks since returning to the starting lineup four games ago.

* The Bulls are 12-0 this season when Kirk Hinrich has at least 17 points this season. Hinrich is the only player with at least 10 games with 17+ points this season whose team is undefeated when he reaches that point total.

Bulls Nip Cavs

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Game Notes For Thursday vs. Cavs

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stats inc.jpg* After dropping the first meeting between these teams this season, the Cavaliers have now won each of the last two matchups.

* The Bulls, who have now lost 40 games for the third consecutive season, have alternated wins and losses in each of their last six home games (WLWLWL).

* The Cavaliers have won 12 of their last 14 games, however, both of their losses in that span have come on the road. Cleveland is shooting an Eastern Conference-leading 48.7 percent from the field this season.

* LeBron James is averaging an NBA-leading 31.0 points per game on the road this season. James is averaging 34.8 points in his last nine trips to Chicago.

* Derrick Rose scored just 12 points against Milwaukee on Tuesday after averaging 23.5 points in his previous four games. Rose is averaging 13.8 points in six career games against the Cavaliers.

* The Bulls have held each of their last three opponents under 90 points and have also held their foes below 90 in five of their last six wins.

Season Recap

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We are reaching the end of our broadcast schedule on WGN and WCIU for the 2009-2010 season, so I wanted to take a look back at some of the highs and lows of the Bulls' year.

Clearly, the improvement of Joakim Noah has to be the number one aspect of this season.  For me, he is the most improved player in the league and could, or should, have been an All-Star.   The same goes for Derrick Rose.   He was Rookie of the Year a year ago...this year, he elevated his game and became the Bulls' first All-Star since Michael Jordan.   And teamwise, the Bulls' 5-game winning streak on the road all against plus-.500 teams is the high point.

Of course there are negatives...the injuries which derailed the Bulls' push for the play-offs would top the list.   But all NBA teams have injuries, so you can't hang your head and the Bulls haven't done that.   They endured a 10-game losing streak and at this point, have fought back and gotten themselves within striking distance of the final play-off spot.  

Whether they get there or not remains to be seen.   You can look back to the 7-game series against the Celtics last spring and that experience, in my opinion, contributed mightily to the strides that players like Noah and Rose took this year to become upper echelon NBA stars.   Who knows, maybe a similar series this spring will advance the development of rookies Taj Gibson and James Johnson.

It's been a great season bringing Bulls Basketball to you on WGN and WCIU.   We all look forward to a successful final 6 games, and hope you will join us again in the fall.   Have a great summer !!

                                                                -Neil Funk

The Final Push - Stacey King

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Hello to my dear friends and "peeps", welcome to my blog. Today we are going to look at the Bulls final six games and their chances of making the playoffs. To be honest, I think they must win every remaining game to have a shot at the playoffs. The Bulls trail the Raptors by one game for the final playoff spot in the east. Toronto has won some games that on paper they should have lost. The Bulls are keeping the pressure on them but Toronto has a favorable schedule. Here is a look at the remaining games...


TORONTO
Tonight at Cleveland
Tomorrow Night vs Boston
Friday Night at Atlanta
Sunday Afternoon vs BULLS
April 12th at Detroit
April 14th vs Knicks

CHICAGO
Tonight vs Milwaukee
Thursday  Night vs Cleveland
Friday Night at New Jersey
Sunday Afternoon at RAPTORS
April 13th vs Boston
April 14th at Charlotte

Thanks for checking in to my blog and make sure to watch The Bulls take on the Bucks tonight on WGN at 7pm ct.

Game Notes For Tuesday vs. Bucks

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stats inc.jpg* The Bulls have won eight consecutive home games against the Bucks, with five of the victories coming by six points or less.

* The Bulls have held opponents to less than 90 points in back-to-back games, and in five of their last six victories.

* The Bucks have lost back-to-back road games by a total of just four points. In those two games, the Bucks attempted 48 fewer free throws than their opponents.

* With a victory against Phoenix on Saturday, the Bucks have clinched their first winning season since the 2002-03 season.

* The last time these two teams faced each other, Brandon Jennings blocked three shots. On only one other occasion this season (two blocks vs. Raptors on December 9), Jennings blocked multiple shots.

* Rookie Taj Gibson has pulled down at least 10 rebounds in seven consecutive games - the longest active streak in the NBA. Gibson has also pulled down at least 15 boards in back-to-back games.